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Dec 14
Support Group holds free FileMaker web seminars

The Support Group (http://www.supportgroup.com/), an authorized FileMaker Pro training provider, has announced a free one-hour web seminar, "Advanced Scripting and Calculations," which will present advanced techniques for the experienced FileMaker user.

The free seminar requires pre-registration, and will be offered twice on Wednesday, Dec. 15, from 11 am to noon (Eastern), and also from 2 -3 pm. It's appropriate for intermediate and advanced FileMaker Pro users

Scheduled speakers are Chad Novotny, vice president of otechnology for The Support Group, and Rick Colcock, system engineer for FileMaker, Inc. You can register for the 11 am and 2 pm sessions at http://cts.vresp.com/c/?FileMakerInc./...

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Dec 14
iKey 2.5 works with KeyCue to displays all shortcuts

Plum Amazing (http://plumamazing.com) has updated iKey, software for automating repetitive actions on the Mac, to version 2.5. It now works in conjunction with KeyCue to display shortcuts and hotkeys. iKey the best way to automate repetitive actions on the Mac.

In essence, an iKey shortcut is a little program in its own right, but you don't need to know programming to create an iKey shortcut. All you have to do is put together three necessary parts of a shortcut. One or more commands that give the shortcut its functionality, a context in which it runs, and a launcher that defines how the shortcut is activated.

Together iKey and KeyCue offer greater power, control and automation for any Mac OS X program including Apple's Final Cut Pro, iTunes, Garage Band and Aperture, and Adobe's PhotoShop, Illustrator, InDesign, Flash, ColdFusion and LightRoom, says Plum Amazing CEO Julian Miller. With KeyCue, it...

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Dec 14
DxO Optics updated to version 6.5.2

DxO Labs (http://www.dxo.com) has released the latest version of its image enhancement software for photographers: DxO Optics Pro 6.5.2. The upgrade adds RAW support in both its Standard and Elite editions for the Pentax K-5 and Sony NEX-5 and NEX-3. Also, 50 new DxO Optics modules are now available.

DxO Optics Pro and upgrades for both Mac OS X (10.5 and higher) and Windows will be offered at a 30% holiday season discount through Dec. 25. They're available from both DxO Labs’ e-store and selected resellers at the holiday season discount of:

° DxO Optics Pro Standard edition: US$99, reduced from $169;

° DxO Optics Pro Elite edition: $199, reduced from $299.
 
All customers who purchased DxO Optics Pro since June 1, 2009 are entitled to a free upgrade to version 6.5. All other users benefit from the 30% discounts:

° DxO Optics Pro Standard (any version) to DxO Optics Pro 6 Standard...

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Dec 14
Two days left for early bird pricing for MacTech Boot Camp

There's just two days left on the early bird pricing for the 2011 MacTech Boot Camp. It's a single-track, hotel based seminar that is specifically geared to serve the needs of consultants and techs wanting to serve their base better. It will be held in San Francisco on Wednesday, Jan. 26.

MacTech Boot Camp attendees are encouraged to visit Macworld Expo San Francisco in the days following MacTech Boot Camp.

Working with MacTech's partner v.2 Consulting, MacTech Boot Camp attendees can take part in a moderated study session and discussion group on Mac OS X support essentials, and then take a proctored Apple Certification Exam. The instructor led study group and exam are normally priced at US$299. MacTech Boot Camp attendees can get a $100 discount, and sign up for study group/exam for $199.

MacTech Boot Camp is priced at $495. If you act by Dec. 15th, you can take advantage of the early registration and save $200 on MacTech Boot Camp (making the registration...

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Dec 14
Japanese digital publishers blast pirated works at the Apple App...

A consortium of digital publishers in Japan has issued a stern rebuke to Apple over the appearance of illegal copies of its authors’ works that have appeared for sale in the Apple App Store, reports "TNW Asia" (http://thenextweb.com/asia/2010/12/14/japanese-publishers-rebuke-apple-o...).

In a joint press release, the consortium, including, the Japan Book Publishers Association, the Japan Magazine Publishers Association, The Electronic Book Publishers Association of Japan, and Digital Comic Association claimed that works by famous authors Haruki Murakami and Keigo Higashino have been illegally sold in the App Store. They're also dubious of Apples’s claim that it is unable to check for copyrighted material during the application screening process.

...

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Dec 14
Computer prices on the rise -- which is good news for Apple

For the first time in years, computer prices are on the rise, according to new info from the NPD research group, as reported by the "Wall Street Times" (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405274870468180457601788378719196...).

In November, the average retail price of a personal computer sold in the U.S. was US$615, up 6% from last year's $580, which marked a record low, according the NPD Group. Average computer prices have now increased in six of the past eight...

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Dec 14
ConceptDraw 2.0 released in tandem with Solution Park

CS Odessa has released ConceptDraw Office 2.0, which now gives business professionals single-click access to integrated solutions for Project management, brainstorming, report writing, and much more.

The latest ConceptDraw Office suite release is being launched in tandem with the new ConceptDraw Solution Park online resource center. ConceptDraw Solution Park features integrated business productivity solutions that bundle ConceptDraw software, templates, and “how-to” guides.

Through the browser, users can view available solutions on ConceptDraw Solution Park and click on the solution they want. ConceptDraw Solution Browser then automatically loads any software, templates and guides supporting the chosen solution.

Version 2.0 also enhances integration of the suite’s ConceptDraw MindMap for mind mapping and brainstorming, ConceptDraw Project project management software, and ConceptDraw PrpO for business diagramming and scoreboard development and display. For...

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Dec 14
'Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures' launches on the Mac

Sony Online Entertainment and LucasArts, in collaboration with TransGaming, has released Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures for the Mac at http://www.CloneWarsAdventures.com .

Here's how the game is described: "Clone Wars Adventures is an action-packed browser-based virtual world where fans can live out the thrills and excitement of Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated TV series on Cartoon Network. 

"Clone Wars Adventures is the ultimate virtual destination for fans of the TV series where players go online to experience fun mini-games, daily activities, events, rewards, lively social environments and competitions. Players can battle alongside their favorite Star Wars characters like Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi. It is updated every week with new content pulled from that week's new episode.
 
"In addition to weekly updates in Clone Wars Adventures, Mac players...

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Dec 14
TimeCache for Mac OS X gets interface improvements

The PandaWare Company (http://www.pandaware.com) has updated TimeCache -- its time and expense billing app for Mac OS X 10.3.9 and higher -- to version 8.0.11. The update offers interface improvements and bug fixes.

TimeCache offers support for timed or manual entries, retainer billing, customizable invoices and reports, printing options, and flexible data entry options. It also offers tracking of all a user's computer activity, the ability to save fine-grained details with time and expense entries, can use Apple Address Book entries for client contact information, can produce charts of billable time and expenses, and can import from and export to iCal calendars.

Licenses for TimeCache are US$70 per user. Version 8.0.11 is a free update for registered users.

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Dec 13
Analyst expects growth of all Apple products over next two...

BMO Capital’s Keith Bachman told clients in a note -- as reported by "Barron's (http://blogs.barrons.com/techtraderdaily/2010/12/13/apple-bmo-ups-target...) -- that he's reiterating a Buy rating on Apple shares and hasraised his price target to $355 from a prior $330.

Bachman also raised his rating for this quarter’s iPhone sales to 16.5 million units, from a prior 15 million. The analyst thinks Apple will sell 60 million iPhones this fiscal year and 76 millioin i fiscall 20`2.

And what of Apple's other products for this fiscal year? Bachman is forecasting 16.8 million Macs, 42.9 million iPods, and 21.3 million iPads. For 2012, he expects 20 million Macs, 36.5 million iPods, and 32 million iPads.

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Dec 13
Apple launches 12 Days of Christmas on iTunes

Apple UK has announced the "12 Days of Christmas" (http://www.itunes12daysofchristmas.co.uk/), which will run Dec. 26 through Jan. 6. Each day will offer a song, music video, TV episode, film, app or book for free download.


Each free download will only be available for 24 hours. You can sign up for daily email alerts for download the special 12 Days of Christmas app to make sure you don't miss out.

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Dec 13
iPhone/iPod/iPad apps for Dec. 13

Here are the latest iPhone/iPod touch/iPod/iPad apps announced. You can find 'em at the Apple App Store (http://www.itunes.com/appstore/).

Edward Dowling has announced Safety Switch 1.0, his new personal panic alarm for iPhone and iPod touch devices. The US$0.99 app allows users to send a distress message with their location to friends and family, ward off predators and call emergency services. Safety Switch features a one-touch shortcut to emergency services, a torch and loud, audible alarm serve to ensure users are out of danger as quickly as possible.

Mobwe has released Taptronics 1.0, a $0.99 iPhone and iPod touch game to practice and test reflex and reaction times. It features multiplayer mode to challenge a friend and an in app voice chat for communication during a challenge. Players can select from two themes to practice the play. Taptronics features two play modes,...

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Dec 13
Initial version of Light Peak may use copper

The initial version of Light Peak will use copper instead of light-based technologies, reports "CNET" (http://news.cnet.com/8301-13924_3-20025179-64.html?tag=mantle_skin;content), quoting "an industry source familiar with Intel's plans."

Developed by Intel and championed by Apple, this proposed technology paves the way for a new generation of extreme computer input and output (I/O) performance, delivering 10Gb/s of bandwidth, with the potential ability to scale to 100Gbs over the next decade, according to David Perlmutter, executive vice president and general manager, Intel Architecture Group. At 10Gb/second, a user could purportedly transfer a full-length Blu-Ray movie in less than 30 seconds.

The optical technology allows for smaller connectors and longer, thinner, and more flexible cables than...

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Dec 13
If the iPad is a computer, Apple has 12% share of worldwide...

I've argued repeatedly that the iPad should be considered a personal computer -- and Goldman Sachs hardware analyst Bill Shope agrees with me. In a note to clients on Monday -- as reported by "Tech Trader Daily" (http://blogs.barrons.com/techtraderdaily/2010/12/13/apple-ipad-mac-12-pc...) -- the analyst only sees computer sales growing 8% next year, but is more bullish on tablet computers, especially the iPad.

In fact, Shope sees iPad sales surpassing Mac revenue by September 2011. The analyst argues that tablets should be considered part of the personal computer market, in which case Apple’s worldwide computer market share would rise to 12% this fiscal year, from 4.4% at present.

Last week DisplaySearch put the...

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Dec 13
Cydia plans competitor to Mac App Store

As Apple prepares to launch the Mac App Store next month, a rival effort is underway by Cydia (http://cydia.saurik.com) -- a popular app store alternative destination for the estimated 10% of owners of jailbroken iPhones -- is planning a competitor, reports "PC World" (http://www.pcworld.com/article/213399/apple_nemesis_to_offer_mac_app_sto...?).
At a developers conference this weekend, Jay Freeman, the man behind Cydia, The Mac App Store is designed to make it easy for users to find, download and pay for apps, without having to move around various web sites to download their software.

"Apple will put every app submitted in the Mac App Store through its infamous approval process. Also, there won'...

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Dec 13
Future unveils 14 'one-off' mags for the iPad

The magazine publishing company, Future, has unveiled 14 new titles for the iPad, each a tablet-specific niche brand that hadn’t existed in print. However, "each is a timeless one-off, designed to attract a large number of single-copy sales this coming New Year," says "mocoNews" (http://moconews.net/article/419-future-sees-ipad-as-a-bookazine-vehicle-...).

Any decision on a regular long-term tablet publishing schedule for Future’s monthly titles will come after these one-offs, perhaps hinting at how publishers are having to find a cost-effective iPad production timetable before going forward, the article adds. It means Future’s tablet strategy looks a lot like its roster of specialist “bookazine” one-offs, which increasingly grace newsagent shelves, says "mocoNews."

Future does publish...

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Dec 13
Paul Allen's lawsuit against Apple, others dismissed

Billionaire investor Paul Allen's patent lawsuit against Apple and other high technology companies has hit a snag as a federal judge in Seattle dismissed the complaint for not describing its allegations specifically enough, reports the "Wall Street Journal" (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405274870405870457601582020637580...).

U.S. District Judge Marsha Pechman on Friday set a Dec. 28 deadline for the plaintiff, a company controlled by Allen called Interval Licensing LLC, to file an amended complaint. A spokesman for Allen said it plans to do so soon, calling the judge's order a "procedural issue" that won't halt the case.

In August it was announced that a tech licensing company controlled by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen was suing 11 companies, including Apple, for violating...

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Dec 13
Ping gets playlist support

Apple’s Ping has added the ability to build and share playlists. Now users can import playlists from iTunes, build playlists in the iTunes social networking service, and let Ping friends add to their playlists.

Ping lets you follow your favorite artists, see what they’re up to, check out photos and videos they’ve posted, see their tour dates and read comments about other artists and albums they’re listening to. In addition, you can post your thoughts and opinions, your favorite albums and songs, the music you’ve downloaded from iTunes and the concerts you plan to attend.

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Dec 13
Ricoh introduces new Aficio series

Ricoh (http://www.ricoh-usa.com) has introduced the Ricoh Aficio MP C3001/C3501 and MP C4501/C5501 Series.

Building on the achievements of the Series' predecessors -- the Aficio MP C2800, MP C3300, MP C4000 and MP C5000 -- these new, versatile color multifunction products (MFPs) offer enhanced productivity, advanced security and eco-friendly operation for businesses of any size, all with a low total cost of ownership (TCO), according to Shun Sato, senior vice president, marketing, Ricoh Americas Corp.

The Aficio MP C3001/C3501 & MP C4501/C5501 series boasts output speeds of up to 30 pages per minute (ppm), 35 ppm, 45 ppm and 55 ppm for both full color and black and white, respectively. A mix of hardware and software solutions expands system capabilities. The hardware enhancements include printing from and scanning to a USB clip drive or SD card without network connectivity.

...

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Dec 13
Apple interested in Nortel's patents?

Last year Nortel sold its optical networking and carrier ethernet business to Ciena for US$769 million and its wireless business to Ericsson for $1.3 billion. Soon it will sell off its patents as well, "among them some thought to be essential 4G wireless technologies like Long Term Evolution (LTE) and Service Architecture Evolution (SAE)," reports "All Things Digital" (http://digitaldaily.allthingsd.com/20101213/everybody-wants-nortels-4g-p...).

That IP is drawing a lot of interest from companies such as Apple, Research in Motion and Nokia, "none of which want to see it in the hands of a rival, particularly as 4G’s commercial availability broadens," the article adds. "All Things D," quoted unnamed sources, say all four companies are participating...

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Dec 13
Android market now second largest app store

Smaato (http://www.smaato.com), a mobile ad optimizer and mobile advertising company, has announced a compilation of mobile advertising trends for 2011. Smaato gathered market data for the three strongest regions in mobile marketing: the USA, Europe and Asia.

The trends show that, in 2010, the iTunes Store tippled its offering of mobile applications and the Android market was established as the second largest app store. Android bypassed Apple with a market share of 25% (Apple has 17%) and is now the second largest OS behind Symbian (37%) according to Morgan Stanley.

The growth of mobile as an established media channel will continue the next couple of years, according to Harald Neidhardt, CMO and co-founder, Smaato. Asia is still the leader in mobile advertising and will proceed being the strongest market in terms of ad spending. In 2010 Japanese companies already invested more than $1 billion in this...

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Dec 13
Apple tech soars on '2010 Trends on Twitter'

Twitter's "2010 Trends on Twitter" list (http://yearinreview.twitter.com/trends/) lists the iPad among the top 10 overall trends (the Gulf Oil spill was number one).


In the technology section, Apple ruled. The iPad was number one, Apple's iOS was number three, the iPone was number four and the MacBook air number nine.

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Dec 13
Apple using iTun.es domain as link shortener

Apple -- which has owned the iTun.es domain since December 2006 and is now rolling out Twitter integration for its Ping social networking service on iTunes -- is now using the domain as a link shortener, reports "MacRumors (http://www.macrumors.com).

Users sharing links to tghe iTunes Store content to Twitter will now see iTun.es being used to generate the links for their Tweets. Third-party Twitter applications may, however, continue to display Twitter's default "t.co" shortened version, notes "MacRumors."

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Dec 13
PhotoStyler for Mac OS X gets new rendering engine

Corner-A has released PhotoStyler 5.0 for Mac OS X (http://corner-a.com/photostyler). This new version features a new rendering engine with better stability and performance, improved user interface, batch processing features, as well as new filters, textures and presets.

PhotoStyler offers a way to style digital photos with your Mac. It supports all image formats that are supported by Mac OS X, including RAW images, and uses your GPU to process the photos wherever possible.

PhotoStyler 5 requires Mac OS X 10.6 or higher. It's Universal Binary so runs natively on PowerPC and Intel Macs. It costs US$30.

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Dec 13
'MUG Event Calendar': guest speakers, parties

This week's "The MUG Event Calendar" is filled with guest speakers and holiday parties.

Apple Senior Systems Engineer Dave Marra will visit a Pennsylvania group, while Michael Mills of Apple Federal will present to a North Carolina group. The MacNotables are out in full force this week, with Bob “Dr. Mac” LeVitus set to deliver a “State of the Mac” address to a Texas group, "Macworld" Senior Editor Christopher Breen scheduled at a California group, and Adam Engst of TidBITS and Take Control and Chuck Joiner of The MacVoices Group teaming up for a virtual visit to a Connecticut group.

Take Control author and Mac expert Joe Kissell will round out the roster with a visit to an Oregon group. Holiday parties are the dominant topic at MUG events this week, but there will also be presentations of the iPad, Microsoft Office, FileMaker Go and iLife ‘11.

"The MUG Event Calendar" can be found at The MUG Center (...

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